I signed up to receive read and review a book called, "How I Got Him to Marry Me." by Cherise Kelley. I normally read books with a paranormal/thriller/mystery slant to them, but periodically I need a brain refresher and will step out of my normal genre. So when I read the description on Good Reads, I though, "Hey, why not?" Half way through the book I realized that it is a perfect combination of "Chicken Soup for the Bride To Be's Soul" and "The Rules" by Ellen Fein and Sherrie Schneider. As I read on through the book I realized it began to bother me. It sounded a lot like a counter book to "He's Just Not That Into You." Greg Behrendt and Liz Tuccillo put out by whiny women who want to be wives.
The author starts out with a wonderful introduction to her idea on the book. I wanted to see a case study after reading her introduction. I wanted to find out at the end what her theories or ideas as to why this was, but instead, it's a book of women who go out of their way to plot or force their man to marry you. There's no ending.
From the author: "...Living together instead of getting married began to be acceptable in the 1960s hippie culture, and by the 1980s, many young men no longer saw the point in marriage. I watched the culture change, but I didn't catch on until it was almost too late for me. Before the 1980s, the man was the one who pushed for marriage. By the 1990s, living together instead of being married was almost expected among young people. Now, in the 21st century, women have a hard time getting married, even if we really want to. If you've been under a rock and haven't noticed this, then search the Internet for the page titled "US Census Marriage and Divorce," and prepare to have your mind blown"......" and "....I'm almost 50 years old now, and I'm a trained teacher. I'm tempted to lecture you in this book. I'm tempted to read between the lines of all these true stories that I've collected from women who have managed to get their boyfriends to marry them, to cull out and spell out what they did that worked and what they did that was foolish. I'm tempted beat you over the head with it.
In short: I'm tempted to tell you what to do...."
I am not sure if it is because I am too independent of a woman, if it is generational, or if it was the book itself, but I was really unhappy with it. It was well written in the grammar, spelling, writing aspect of it. It is even an interesting topic, which is why I had chosen it to review. Overall, however, it was just alright.
I read the first 30 or so stories. Each story presents a woman dating/in a relationship with a man who essentially wants to be a wife and not a "girlfriend." Each story read the same: Somewhat spoiled sounding women who get fed up, put their foot down and plot in a manner to make this man their husband. Women in our society, American society, already has enough stigma attached to them on being high maintenanced, spoiled, demanding, conniving, and manipulative. This book absolutely did not help the cause.
I skimmed through the rest of the book, in hopes to find a chapter or two on a summary of what the author's intent with publishing this book was. I had hoped to find some kind of lesson or deep thought. I didn't. Instead the book just ended with a "Thank you" to the brides /wives that had written in; leaving me with the feeling the book and idea are completely dropped. I wanted to see a case study after reading her introduction. I wanted to find out at the end what her theories or ideas as to why this was, but instead, it's a book of women who literally mapped out ways they manipulated their mates into marriage.
I guess, what it comes down to for me is that this is a really wonderful idea for a book, but truly just seems like the start of something greater. The stories of each woman's path into marriage is interesting. But I want to know a psychological view on it. I want the meat of it. I have always been told by older generations, men and even other women, that if a man wants to marry you, HE WILL. If he hasn't after two years, odds are, you're not the one. Tripping him, twisting him, and making him fall for marriage is not a healthy way into a long lasting marriage.
Some examples that bothered me the most:
#3 Lizzie and Cordell
#8 Layla and Jamie
#10 Julie and Samuel
Some stories that I did actually enjoy reading:
#5 Jessica and Stu
#6 Marie and Fred
#9 Trisha and David - I absolutely LOVED this story!!
But that is all I am going to say about those specific stories, you'll just HAVE to buy the book and read it for yourself. I would be curious what the view of my female friends, married or unmarried, feel about this book too.